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Corey Brewer: The Intangibles of Potential in Its Finest

Timber WolfAnalyst IIAugust 9, 2010

PHOENIX - MARCH 16:  Corey Brewer #22 of the Minnesota Timberwolves slam dunks the ball over Robin Lopez #15 of the Phoenix Suns during the NBA game at US Airways Center on March 16, 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

I know, Corey Brewer right?

Intangibles of star potential? A player that only averaged 13 points last season has those intangibles?

No doubt in my mind, and anyone with half a brain would be stupid not to see it.

Not only is Corey Brewer one of the more entertaining players to watch in the NBA, but he has the intangibles of a great all around NBA player and his skills are a work in progress.

Let's look at some things.

Corey Brewer stands at least 6'8'' with an equivalent wingspan while playing shooting guard and small forward. He has significant size and length for both positions, yet while sporting a frail frame, he appears able to hold his own, defending some of the best players the NBA have to offer.

Let's take it back a notch.

Corey Brewer, college ball style. This guy recorded the only triple double in Florida Gators history, posting 15 points, 10 rebounds and 13 assists (the most assists since Jason Williams recorded 17 in 1997). In that very game, he also drew six charges.

In high school, Corey Brewer posted 30 points and 13 rebounds a game on average. He also won McDonald's All-American his senior year.

He was also named most outstanding player in the 2007 NCAA tournament.

With a resume like that, it's not hard to see why he was a lottery pick, and why Wolves fans were oozing at him when he was drafted. Corey Brewer was a rare special case.

A player that was incredibly effective, had no polish at all, and who was long with a defensive mindset coming into the NBA. On rare occasion does a player have strong qualities on the court, such as being able to pass, block, steal, shoot, and dunk with velocity while defending as many positions you can count—and still has such a long way to go.

Corey Brewer wasn't your everyday upside kind of player in the NCAA, he was already affective, and was geared to being affective in the NBA his first season.

Fast forward three years later and the TV would have showed that Corey Brewer's first year was filled with benching, non development and uneasiness.  In his second year, he tore his ACL after starting to get used to the NBA, and in his third year, while recovering from his ACL, he doubled his point production and had a career year.

And what a career year it was.

This year turned Corey Brewer from a bust to capable. But I saw a little more than 13 points per game.

I saw Corey Brewer sinking shot after shot after shot, going on to have 33 straight games with at least one 3-pointer. That same Corey Brewer slashed to the rim in kamikaze fashion and looked crazy, started to drive with some calmness and actually finish.

For what it's worth, Corey Brewer actually showed some court vision as he did in college with the triangle offense.

At the beginning of the season, many were stating that Corey Brewer was a energy guy off the bench, but towards the end of the season, Corey Brewer had many game changing moments that would suggest that his potential is far greater than what people think. Please consider the following—

  • 27 points, 4 assists, 2 rebounds against the Detroit Pistons
  • 21 points, 3 rebounds, 2 steals against the Phoenix Suns
  • 21 points, 5 rebounds 2 assists against the Denver Nuggets
  • 24 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals against the Dallas Mavericks
  • 20 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists against the Los Angeles Clippers
  • 22 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists against the Cleveland Cavaliers
  • 22 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists against the New York Knicks
  • 22 points, 1 rebound, 2 assists, 2 steals against the Memphis Grizzlies
  • 25 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals against the Denver Nuggets
  • 27 points, 5 rebounds against the Washington Wizards
  • 20 points, 5 rebounds against the Sacramento Kings
  • 22 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists against the Utah Jazz
  • 22 points, 13 rebounds, 4 assists against the Denver Nuggets

Didn't know he posted that many 20+ point games, huh?

However, the most impressive performance was the game against the Oklahoma City Thunder where he posted 25 points, six rebounds, five assists, and five steals, while holding Kevin Durant scoreless for 11 minutes in the second half.

It wasn't only that game that showed me that Brewer had the makeup of a potentially great NBA player. But, Brewer has shown up in clutch moments in the fourth quarter time after time. He's also led the Wolves in scoring plenty of times, shown that he's willing to take the last shot, and that he's truly a winner.

Refusing to go soft and always wanting to go hard, Brewer's effort alone has made him a fan favorite. If it isn't dunking on Fisher and Lopez, or scoring 18 points in a quarter against Durant, or even shooting 40 foot buzzer beaters to take a game into overtime, it's something that involves making a clutch steal or block, or hitting a clutch 3-pointer.

If anyone has actually watched him play, the progression he made throughout the season was fantastic, but what made it even better is that he had just come off of a torn ACL injury. Not to mention he played less than sub par in his summer league showing and that he was shooting less than 40% from the field throughout his first 20 games this season.

It wasn't just him shooting stand still jump shots, but you saw Brewer shooting shots off of screens with Darko Milicic, you also saw him taking and hitting a lot of shots at the end of the shot clock, and if you've seen him play, if there was a stat for best off the ball defender, Corey Brewer easily would be in the top five.

Does he really have the makeup of a legit starter in the NBA? Why do I think so?

Because a vast majority of the world thinks so too. With the Timberwolves acquiring Martell Webster and Wesley Johnson, it would appear that those two would be primed to start at the two and three positions, respectively. But if you look around on projected starting lineups for the season upcoming, Corey Brewer is penciled in as the starting two for next season.

It's safe to say that Brewer will only improve again next season, so there's a legit possibility that Brewer could edge out Martell Webster and Wayne Ellington for the starting spot.

He will be a fourth year veteran, he can shoot the ball from distance, he's a defensive specialist, he's familiar with the Wolves offense, and he fits the mold of young athletic wing players. Not only that, but he's commonly known as a Wolves favorite and he's a clutch competitor.

And just like when Corey was in college, it's crazy to see just how unpolished Corey Brewer is. Because of that, it's the very reason to believe that he still has a lot of potential to be something great.

Thanks for reading!

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